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The Boys (2009)

The Boys: The Sherman Brothers' Story (original title)
Trailer
1:39 | Trailer
Their music is unforgettable. Their name is legend. Delve into the lives and cinematic legacy of the prolific songwriting duo whose music has been featured in classic movies such as Mary Poppins (1964) and The Jungle Book (1967).

Directors:

Gregory V. Sherman, Jeff Sherman (as Jeffrey C. Sherman)

Videos

Photos

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Cast

Credited cast:
Richard M. Sherman ... Self
Robert B. Sherman ... Self
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Julie Andrews ... Self
Jim Dale ... Self
Roy Edward Disney ... Self (as Roy E. Disney)
Micky Dolenz ... Self
Karen Dotrice ... Self
Samuel Goldwyn Jr. ... Self
Bruce Gordon Bruce Gordon ... Self
Sheldon Harnick Sheldon Harnick ... Self
James Jensen James Jensen ... Self
Jeff Kurtti ... Self
John Landis ... Self
Angela Lansbury ... Self
John Lasseter ... Self
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Storyline

Their music is unforgettable. Their name is legend. The Boys: The Sherman Brothers' Story is an intimate journey through the lives of Robert and Richard Sherman, the astoundingly prolific Academy Award® winning songwriting team. While their songs, "A Spoonful Of Sugar (Mary Poppins)" and "I Want To Be Like You (Jungle Book)," to name a few, celebrated family entertainment and happy endings, their life together was not as harmonious. Go behind the scenes for a fascinating glimpse into how Walt Disney used the language of music to bring the brothers together, creating a cinematic legacy like no other.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Brothers, Partners, Strangers

Genres:

Documentary

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG for mild thematic elements, smoking images and brief language
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Did You Know?

Trivia

[All trivia items for this title are spoilers.] See more »

Quotes

Robert B. Sherman: [talking about Mary Poppins author P.L. Travers] She was such a witch.
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Crazy Credits

Features a clip of Chitty Chitty Bang Bang's main song being used as a wake up call for Commander Pamela Ann Melroy and the Space Shuttle Discovery crew on November 7, 2007. See more »

Connections

Features Charlotte's Web (1973) See more »

Soundtracks

I Can't Forget The Melody
Words & Music by Robert B. Sherman and Richard M. Sherman
Performed by Gemma Craven
Courtesy of Paradine Co-Productions Ltd.
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User Reviews

 
Their songs will keep them ever young for generations to come
22 January 2015 | by SimonJackSee all my reviews

Although I've been a movie buff most of my life, for my first few decades I didn't pay much attention to the people behind the movies, other than the actors. So, when I began studying the silver screen in earnest several years ago, I was surprised at the list of accomplishments of the Sherman Brothers. Then, I recently watched a newer DVD of "Mary Poppins," which I hadn't watched for many years. It had some bonus video short subjects, including background on the music. That peaked my interest more and I bought the DVD of the Sherman Brothers' story, "The Boys." I was further surprised to learn of their personality clashes over time. While they never broke out in angry turmoil, it became too stressful for Robert, who then moved away.

That their different interests, personalities and characters should be a source of creative conflict is amazing. But, they both testify to that in the numerous interview snippets included in this biographical documentary. The separation of their families for nearly four decades – when they lived just houses away from each other while the kids were growing up – that was tragic. All the more reason to congratulate their sons Gregory and Jeffrey for meeting to bury the hatchets they didn't even know they had, and make this biodoc as a way to tell the story of the Sherman Brothers and their accomplishments. And, in the process, to hopefully get their dads back together.

The documentary is first-rate in all aspects. It is excellent work, with excellent material that they researched and put together from the past. The interviews with others who worked with The Boys were spot on. And, this DVD too has some bonus material that gives even more information.

I'm sure that the people interviewed are right – that many of the Sherman Brothers' songs will live on for generations. The most popular and well known are "Chim Chim Cher-ee," "A Spoonful of Sugar," "Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious," "Winnie the Pooh," "The Wonderful Thing About Tiggers," "Chitty Chitty Bang Bang," "It's a Small World," and "Anything Can Happen." The brothers had great praise and admiration for Walt Disney. It was he who made them the resident music creators for all of the Disney ventures. Besides the two Oscars they won, they had dozens of nominations for major awards over the years and won a number.

They wrote 31 major movie scores, live action and animated, for Disney and others. They wrote dozens of songs for the Disney theme parks and for the Disney TV programs. Several became pop hits over the years – in addition to the above songs from their shows.

One thing that I found especially interesting about Bob, was his experience toward the end of World War II. He had just turned 17 and got permission form his parents to enlist in the Army in 1943. In this film, Bob says he and his squad were the first Americans to enter the Dachau prison camp. He said the sight of the corpses and ovens would be "nightmares for the rest of my life."

The film has a number of interviews with A.J. Carothers. He was a long- time playwright and TV writer with Disney, and a close friend of both Bob and Richard. He said that the positive songs of the boys were uplifting to everyone who worked around them. He described their musical output as joyful, fun and romantic. They didn't create sentimental music, but romantic songs. He quoted author F. Scott Fitzgerald for his definition. "A sentimental person thinks things will last, and a romantic hopes against hope they will not." That's from Fitzgerald's first novel, "This Side of Paradise."

Bob tells a story about how they came up with the word, "supercalifragilisticexpialidocious." "When we were really young kids, we went to summer camp. And, they had a contest. Who could make a longer word than antidisestablishmentarianism. That was a very famous word. And, we messed around. We came up with an idea for a word."

The Boys and others have asked how many people can say "supercalifragilisticexpialidocious" backwards. Richard said he could, and he rattled off a word. Unfortunately, the IMDb review won't accept my giving these examples with syllable breaks. The Web site says that my review contains too many spelling mistakes. So, I will just finish this with general references here. Julie Andrews said it the same way, but she admitted it as the syllables in reverse order – not the full word actually spelled and pronounced backwards. But even that wasn't the case, because in their example they recited six of the seven syllable breaks in reverse order but then said super backwards as well. So, their rendition is a mixed bag of some of the syllables backwards and in reverse order. For fun, I then spelled the word in reverse with syllable breaks for those who might want to take a crack at it. With this, it's obvious why the songwriters chose to try for just saying the syllables in reverse.

For trivia fans, the one-word song title has 34 letters and uses 15 of the 26 letters of the alphabet. Of those, 16 are vowels and 18 are consonants. The vowel used most is the letter "i," which appears seven times. I offer this all in the spirit of the Sherman Brothers and Walt Disney who brought us so much laughter and many smiles in their music, movies and stories.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

24 April 2009 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Boys: The Sherman Brothers' Story See more »

Filming Locations:

London, England, UK See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$14,632, 24 May 2009

Gross USA:

$55,513

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$55,513
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

SDDS | Dolby Digital | DTS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
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